June was a great reading month to say the least. I managed to steal a day where all I did from midday to bedtime was read. It did wonders for my spirit among other things. The perfect getaway I’d say. Here’s what I read in June:
I really was pleasantly surprised by this book. I was not expecting to like it quite as much as I did. The book follows Fletcher, an orphan who lives in the village Pelt during war between the humans and the Orcs. The humans of Homminum are in conflict with dwarves and elves. They are supposedly fighting a war against the elves as well. In Pelt, Fletcher is a blacksmith’s apprentice who through utter luck and great character stumbles upon an ancient scroll which then begins an endearing story of the human spirit. In this book, the first in the Summoner series, Matharu tackles hard hitting issues such as race, class and privilege alongside very heart-warming themes such as friendship, resilience, talent and fate. I love these kind of Young Adult Fantasies as I find myself always rooting for the underdog in life and in fiction. This story really melted my heart, I cannot wait for the 2ndbook. Matharu’s voice is simple, eloquent and inviting. For a debut novel this is a story well told and incredibly captivating. It’s been my fastest read in a very long time. I read the last half of the book in a matter of hours.
I admit I did not have an easy start to this book. It was a tough read to start until I got into Mohlele’s rhythm and the more I read the more beautiful it became! WOW!
I’m generally a fan of dialogue – I don’t understand literature with too little or none of it, but the way he fashioned this book made dialogue unnecessary and indeed best kept to a minimum. I loved the poetry of the prose and the subject – Pleasure.
I will say though I enjoyed the character in his dream state more than in his lucid state. I think Mohlele has tried as best as anyone to unravel the power of pleasure. There are a few suicide triggers in the book. Save for that it is truly a splendid work of art.
Coconut is one of those necessary stories to tell. It is a mirror held up for those of us who found our identity post-apartheid. Taken to former ‘whites only’ schools – our parent’s dreams fulfilled. Guarantees to better lives than they had. It is an opportunity to look deep into what we have or could have morphed into.
It also helps to see the story from a different angle. As humans we can only see as far as our eyes can reach and often hold others to our warped and at times limited ideals and convictions.
Post-apartheid South Africa birthed two kinds of black children, classes apart, same skin, same history, different sacrifices and realities. The question then is how do these two kids see themselves in one another? Or did democracy prove to alienate us further from each other?
The question is, who did we become?